Riihi shawl

Fall feels like it was a life time ago. Last fall I visited the biggest craft fair in Finland. The lovely folks at Pirtin kehräämö (a Finnish spin mill) booth asked me if I'd be interested in designing something for their yarns. I said I would think about it but inspiration struck almost immediately and the next day I went back to show them my little shawl sketch.

What: Riihi / Own pattern
How: Two sets of circular needles 3.75 mm
From: Pirtin kehräämö Kampalanka 90 TEX x 3, 200 g

Too bad they had already sold all of the beautiful light grey yarns I had my eye on. So I got the yarn in December when I visited the spin mill for a tour.

I designed a lovely and clean, crescent shaped shawl. It has garter stitch section in one color, and two-color brioche sections with short rows. The shawl has a contrast color zigzag edge with i-cord bind off.

It all started with the idea of  two-color brioche short rows. I wondered why no one was doing it so I gave it a go. I pretty soon found out why people weren't doing it: the stitches ended up in the wrong place on the needles to start the next row. I was about ready to give up when I came up with  a solution for this problem I had created: another set of needles.

So, in this shawl you get to try out working short rows in two-color brioche - and it takes two needles of the same size. The technique isn't difficult, it just takes two needles. I was nervous for the test knitting because it would reveal if others found the technique difficult. But I was very happy to find out all my test knitters felt the instructions were clear and easy, and they came up with beautiful shawls. I really enjoy learning new tricks you can do with yarn and needles if you're ready to take a look outside the box.

The yarn I used for this design is woollen spun. If you're not familiar with the concept, in woollen spun yarn the fibres are all combed the same direction before spinning the wool into yarn. It makes for a sleek, soft yarn that is more dense than worsted spun in which the fibres can point in all possible directions. This was my first time using Pirtin kerhäämö's woollen spun yarn and I liked it a lot. The shawl took 1.5 skeins of the grey main color and under 1 skein of the orange contrast color.

You can find the English version of the pattern in my Ravelry store. The pattern is -20 % with the code "WOOLLEN" during this week.

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